Here are two family Christmas recipes, one each from each of my wonderful grandmothers. These seemed appropriate given Joe’s Christmas food obsession! With lots and lots of love for your wedding!
Grandma Joan’s Macaroons
This is my grandma’s macaroon recipe – she used to make vast quantities every Christmas. She’s too old so my mum makes them instead now. They’re the original macaroons – none of this French “Macaron” nonsense!
- 1 egg white
- 2 oz ground almonds
- 3 ½ oz caster sugar
- ½ teaspoon almond essence
- Split almonds and/ or glace cherries
- Line baking sheets with non-stick baking paper, then rice paper
- Whisk egg white until stiff and fold in ground almonds, caster sugar and almond essence
- Place spoonfuls of the mixture onto the rice paper, leaving space for spreading
- Top each biscuit with split almond or piece of glace cherry as preferred
- Bake in a preheated oven at 160 degrees for 15-20 in until just beginning to colour
- Cool on wire rack, then tear away rice paper
Grandma Sue’s Christmas Pudding
My Australian grandma got this recipe from her own mother. When my grandparents first moved to the UK in the fifties, my great-grandmother would send them Christmas puddings by sea mail from Tasmania in a calico pudding cloth. Apparently they keep for more than a year. We still have it every year for Christmas.
- 6 oz currants
- 6 oz sultanas
- 12 oz raisins
- 3 oz mixed peel
- 4 oz flour
- Pinch of salt
- 8 oz breadcrumbs
- 8 oz suet
- 8 oz brown sugar
- ½ tsp mixed spice
- 1 oz ground almonds
- Grated rind of 1 lemon
- ¼ grated nutmeg
- 4 eggs
- Brandy, old ale or milk, enough to moisten
Mix all the dried fruit well together. In a separate large bowl mix the suet, flour, breadcrumbs, brown sugar, spice, ground almonds and grated nutmeg. Thoroughly mix the dried fruit in with this.
Beat the eggs well with the brandy, ale or milk, and stir in the fruit and flour mixture. Make sure all is moistened and that there are no dry bits. Add a little more brandy etc. if needed. Turn into well-greased pudding bowls, cover with greased paper or foil. Steam for 6-7 hours on the day of making, cool, recover with clean paper or foil and store in a cool, dry place.
On Christmas day, steam for a further 4-5 hours, and serve hot with brandy sauce or cream.